Friday, July 23, 2010

Review of the Time Traveler's Wife

I don't even know why I decided to read this book. A friend gave it to me as she was moving from Vancouver, and I knew enough from the movie previews to know that it wasn't going to be a great read. But I picked it up in March as we were in the midst of packing our old apartment and getting ready to move to our new one, and it was the perfect, mindless novel that I needed to keep me distracted from the stress of moving. But it wasn't very good.

The premise is that Henry DeTamble can travel through time, mostly backwards, but forwards too. It comes on suddenly, and he disappears from the present to appear naked in some other time. Where he'll land is purely up to chance, but he happens to land in the field next to Clare Abshire's house in Michigan quite frequently. He meets her when she is quite young, but has traveled from a different time, when they are married and have a family. All of this he has to keep from her until time catches up with them. Similarly, the first time Clare meets Henry (when he has time traveled and landed in her field) he is already in his 30s, therefore, when they meet in 'real time', and both of them are in their 20s, she knows exactly who he is, but he's never met her before. Confused? I was a little bit at times, but decided that it was too much effort to try and ensure that all of the time traveling stuff added up and made sense, so I just went with it.

The problem with this book was that even though it's a love story, and definitely has a twist (the time traveling), it wasn't all that interesting. There was nothing particularly gripping about the characters, and because you know something tragic has to happen in order for it to have an arc or climax, that was the only thing that kept me reading. But, it was an easy read, and fairly mindless, and therefore perfect for the stressful time of packing and moving.


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